There’s only one thing more important than knowing exactly where to take your family and friends for a life-changing ski trip, and that is knowing which chalet will really knock everyone’s ski socks off.
So, if you’ve got your eye on Niseko for your next ski trip, and your group is looking for a luxury chalet that is out of this world, then look no further. We have handpicked 5 of our favourite chalets that are an experience in masterful design, luxury appointments and attentive service — and all deliver a truly extraordinary Japanese experience.
Located in the secluded Annupuri National Park, this 5-bedroom ultra-luxurious ski-in home caters for the whole family. Boasting a rare list of amenities including; large indoor heated pool, 5 zone sound system (complete with DJ decks, of course), a billiard table, eight-seat cinema, authentic pizza oven and a sauna. No one is going thirsty in this exquisite chalet – there’s even a fully-stocked bar with the very best liquors, beer on tap and a 1,000 bottle wine cellar.
Your stay includes a chalet manager, an internationally trained ‘Kaseifu’ private chef serving up daily gourmet breakfast and evening meals… and a chauffeur. But it doesn’t stop there. Upon arrival, you are fitted out with your skis, boots and/or snowboard equipment in the comfort of your chalet – and our personal favourite – every adult staying here receives a complimentary one-hour in-home massage every day. Seriously, this is one chalet that will be truly difficult to leave at the end of an unparalleled winter holiday experience.
Japanese for ‘Swan Mountain’, Hakuchozan was named after the fairytale castle in Bavaria ‘Neuschwanstein’ (meaning New Swan) – which also happens to be the inspiration for Disneyland’s Sleeping Beauty Castle. While Hakuchozan looks nothing like either castle, staying in this exquisite chalet might make you feel like you’re living out a chapter in a modern winter fairytale.
You’ll have to decide what you love best about this chalet – because we can’t. From the lure of freshly baked bread filling the corridors in the morning to the delicious breakfast feast served with views over Mt Yotei, you’ll have the perfect vantage point for deciding which resort you will be chauffeured to that day. But we do have to admit, it is hard to beat being whisked away from the bottom of your last run, directly to a crackling fireplace where your favourite drink will be waiting for you before you hop into the outdoor jacuzzi. Is there a better way to finish a day of powder skiing?
It needs to be seen to be believed. Recipient of Japan’s Best Ski Chalet award at the World Ski Awards for 2018 and 2019, this place is an experience in a new realm of luxury designed to melt your worries away with a team of staff to pamper to your every need while you soak up the Hokkaido mountain experience. Go ahead, spoil yourself.
Kimamaya, or ‘be yourself’ in Japanese, is exactly what you will find yourself doing in this exclusive luxury boutique hotel set in the middle of Niseko Hirafu village. While not technically a chalet, with only nine beautifully styled rooms it’s ideal for couples or families looking to escape the crowds. The personalised service here is second-to-none, making you feel like the only ones staying here, and the small touches like swapping your ski boots for Japanese slippers really make you feel at home. We love the onsite private onsen, in-house massages and to top it all off breakfast is served next door at The Barn by Odin — an internationally acclaimed restaurant dishing up world-class cuisine using local Hokkaido ingredients. For those who have a hunger and a thirst for the best, this property is an obvious choice.
We like the way this boutique hotel that has been truly designed around you; a place where you can kick back in front of the fireplace with friends and share stories of all those powder turns made, while the children run amuck in the purpose-built kids’ room downstairs. Everyone really does have a place to ‘just be’ in this exceptional hotel.
Surrounded by meadows and lush forests, this secluded woodland hideaway is the essence of luxury and relaxation. A place to sit and reflect, experience authentic ryokan traditions in the serene, natural setting of the Hanazono Forest. Bliss out in a state of zen as you soak up Zaborin’s intimate charm. Inside and out, guests are encompassed by beauty — from the sleek, modern architecture to the natural spring onsens — simply sit back and let the serenity wash over you.
There are 15 impeccably designed villas to choose from, each one with its own private indoor and outdoor onsen boasting breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes. If you’re looking to dial up the romance, Zaborin is hard to beat. Food lovers will be treated to a masterful menu of signature kita kaiseki cuisine, lovingly prepared by award-winning chef, Yoshihiro Seno, whilst indoors there’s a library, a communal living space (complete with lakeside views), a bar where you can sample delicious Japanese whiskies, a local boutique, and massage room where you can arrange private spa treatments. There’s also a candlelit foot bath in the courtyard where you can rest weary feet after a hard day on the slopes.
Spoilt with breathtaking vistas, impeccable service and cutting-edge design, this exclusive Japanese hideaway really is the cherry on top of Niseko’s most exclusive property. Spanning the top 3 floors of the building, your group of up to 16 — complete with 7 ensuite bedrooms and a room for nannies — have plenty of space to spread out and unwind. Featuring a rooftop onsen with unbeatable views of Mt Yotei, as well as a second private ensuite onsen attached the the master bedroom, a games room for the kids and not-so-young kids, a man cave with the finest wine and whisky selections, 2 massage rooms, private sauna as well as a 10-seater vehicle at your disposal 24 hours a day.
Mt Yotei provides the atmosphere — the uninterrupted panoramic views are beyond breathtaking, especially taken in from your private outdoor onsen — whilst inside, attentive staff deliver 6-star service provide attention to detail beyond anything you’ve ever experienced before.
Whether you’re looking for a mega chalet, or something more modest, we’ve spent back-to-back years choosing our favourite properties to suit a wide range of tastes. Let us know your likes and dislikes, and we can recommend the best options.
Mabey Ski’s adventure designers have travelled and skied all over the world to find the most unique and mindblowing ski experiences on the planet. If you are interested in heading to Japan or anywhere else in the world for your next adventure, then we are here to show you how.